The island was inhabited by the Illyrians before falling to Rome in the 1st century BC. Slavs settled around Novalja in the 7th century AD. In the 11th century, salt production began to take off, resulting in conflicts with Zadar and Rab over the salt trade. In 1409 Pag was sold to Venice along with Zadar and the rest of Dalmatia. Subsequent squabbles saw the island invaded by Venetians, Austrians, French and then Austrians again, followed by a German-Italian occupation during WWII.